“Per Stirpes,” “Per Capita to Children,” and “Per Capita to Heirs”- in this article we explain beneficiary designations, with examples of each.“Per Stirpes,” “Per Capita to Children,” and “Per Capita to Heirs” – Small words with big meanings. Probate is often a challenging and confusing process. Sometimes, beneficiaries designated in a will can “pre-decease,” or die before, the person who wrote the will. What happens to the portion of the estate that would have gone to the pre-deceased person, if they had survived the writer of the will, depends upon specific language used in the will-- the small words with big meanings.Understanding Per Stirpes and Per Capita Beneficiary DesignationsStirpes is a Latin term meaning “by roots,” and Capita is a Latin term meaning “by the head.”Consider the three examples below. This this scenario, a widower named Todd has designated his four children, Sarah, Jared, Zachary, and Rodger as equal heirs to his estate. However, after the time the …Read more
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